How We Make Products Better
January 21, 2015
The art of building products
Show me the data
So what can you do to start applying science to your product development process? It’s simple — get data.
Analytics is transforming how businesses are run more than ever. Marketing teams employ data scientists to optimize spend to maximize lead generation and conversion. Sales teams are using data to optimize calling and forecasting. There are examples in nearly every part of a business, except for the product organization where leaders are seen as visionaries and artists — not data geeks.
Lies, Damn Lies, Statistics
Of course data is not a panacea. The primary challenge with data is incomplete data. Robert Austin writes about metrics dysfunction in his book Measuring and Managing Performance in Organizations. Metrics dysfunction occurs when you start making decisions on incomplete metrics. For example, incentivizing recruiting teams solely on interviews could ultimately lead to an organization wasting time interviewing inappropriate candidates. Incomplete metrics are tantalizing to use since the cost of collecting metrics varies greatly, and the “right” metric may be considerably more expensive than others.
Pendo’s vision is to dramatically reduce the effort and cost to get a complete set of data about products. With a complete set of data, product teams can confidently transition their organization from art to science without the risk of metrics dysfunction. This is ultimately how we will help organizations make great products.
If we have data, let’s look at data. If all we have are opinions, let’s go with mine.